What does it mean to be healthy?
It’s an inner state of resilience and balance that allows you to move through life without being hurt or affected – for example, interacting with germs without being infected, occasionally eating unhealthy foods without being harmed, and coming into contact with allergens without reacting to them.
“Healthy is an inner state of resilience and balance that allows you to move through life without being hurt or affected.”
Do you follow any specific way of eating?
I try to eat organic whole foods that are as close to their natural state as possible. I am a vegetarian and I drink a lot of raw vegetable juice.
Why is it important for you to feel (and look) healthy?
In 2009, after years of abusing my body with too much work and the wrong food, I found myself unable to function. There was an inability from the inside of my body to go on and, although I went to many doctors, the only real solution came from changing my diet.
What foods or groups of foods (if any) do you avoid?
I try not to eat dairy, gluten and sugar. I find that when I eat them, my body slows down and I become really lethargic.
Do you cook every day?
Yes, I do. It’s really important to me that my husband and I eat well because that helps us stay healthy and happy throughout our busy lives. Cooking also creates a bond in the home, and there is nothing better than eating food together at the table that you have both just cooked.
“Cooking creates a bond in the home, and there is nothing better than eating food together at the table that you have both just cooked.”
What’s your shopping routine?
I buy organic produce from my neighbourhood supermarket, and I go to a health-food store once a week for staples that I cannot get anywhere else. I don’t like shopping online as I can’t touch what I am buying.
What do you think are the most nutritious foods?
In my opinion, the most nutritious and whole foods are vegetables. I juice every day so that I can incorporate as many as I can into my daily food intake.
How do you hope to help other people learn about healthy eating and living through Roots & Bulbs?
We hope to enable people to understand that health and feeling good need a consistent approach. We don’t believe in detoxes or cleanses, as they are only temporary solutions. Having a vegetable juice incorporated into your daily routine, or adding something green and healthy to your food regime, will keep out the bad foods and the cravings, and it can have a long-lasting effect. I think of it as adding the good stuff instead of always taking out the bad.
“I think of it as adding the good stuff instead of always taking out the bad.”
What is your optimal breakfast?
Porridge with nuts, and a green juice.
How do you try to stay on track when you travel?
I can’t – it’s impossible. That was one reason why I was not very happy while working in finance. I was always travelling, which meant that I could not eat well at all. Our world at the moment does not cater for healthy travellers. When I fly, I will always make loads of snacks to have in my bag, so that I can avoid craving processed food.
What are your favourite snacks?
Anything that includes nut butters and raw cacao powder.
What is your approach to food at Roots & Bulbs?
Our approach to food is a very simple one. It covers all aspects of nutrition by championing the need to include four elements every time one eats. These are: proteins, antioxidants, essential fats and fibre.
When you go out to dinner, how do you navigate the menu?
As I am a vegetarian, I find most menus restrictive. I always try to have something raw in the meal and am picky with the waiter about the sauces that come with my choices. I don’t allow other people to dress me in the morning, so why should I let them dress my salads and foods?
“I don’t allow other people to dress me in the morning, so why should I let them dress my salads and foods?”
What is the hardest part of the day for you to avoid temptation?
I think, like most people, the most challenging time is at about 5pm. I get hungry then and will turn to a green juice and some nuts or a healthy smoothie, which re-energises me.
How do you treat yourself in terms of food?
I always treat myself. I believe that one has to. It is so extremely hard to always have your guard up. My husband and I eat out about twice a week, and those usually are my biggest treats! Dessert is my favourite.
Have you ever tried a diet or detox that worked for you?
Honestly, never. I have tried a few times and it has never been a walk in the park. The most annoying feeling I got from a cleanse or a detox is that, after a three-day programme and some days of easing in the foods again at the end, I ended up feeling the same as I felt in the beginning. I just don’t feel it is sustainable.
What’s your exercise routine/schedule?
Exercise for me is sanity. I train four times a week for 40 minutes a session.
Do you like trying new exercise classes/trainers/trends?
I love training with weights and circuits – it’s my favourite. The great thing about this type of work out is that I can flex them and change them all the time, and that keeps me excited. Once in a while, I will try out a new thing but I will always go back to my squats.
Is there anyone you consider a healthy role model?
I am influenced by the work of Charlotte Gerson, the author of the Gerson therapy books. I see significant value and logic in her vision and approach to health.